Album Review | Rough Trade | Review by Allan Wilkinson | Stars: 5/5
There’s little doubt that Josienne Clarke is possessed of one of the most original singing voices in the country, not only in the melancholy of her timbre, but also in her unique phrasing, each lyric pitched like poetry, delivered with poise and high artistry. Having worked closely with both guitarist Ben Walker, the jazz composer Kit Downes and more recently Samantha Whates in PicaPica, Josienne has developed her rich vocal style without losing any of her originality, inventiveness and humour.
The songs included on her first solo record on Rough Trade are distinctively Josienne’s, a little bit quirky, a little bit serious, a little bit playful, a little bit wistful, but never throwaway. It’s almost as if every syllable and every note are strategically placed for best effect, from the mournful opener “Learning to Sail in All Weather”, the optimistic “Leaving London” to the highly infectious pop drama of “Slender, Sad and Sentimental”, which should be compulsory listening when running the hoover around the house.
Choice Track: “Slender, Sad and Sentimental” (NSV 490)